“Live and learn” goes the old cliché. And while that may seem hopelessly simplistic and dated, it’s obvious that Muscle Shoals born and bred singer-songwriter Rhyal Knight has done his share of both preceding the release of his debut solo EP In Quotations, which is out November 10th. Years of bouncing around through various bands and lineups—including some particularly frustrating times with Cold Cold Sweats, his previous outfit who imploded on the eve of a 17 day tour—and recording in expensive studios under the burden of time and money, have molded Knight’s vision. He knows what works for him and what doesn’t, an integral formula for success as a solo artist.
The vibe of these four tunes is deliberate and unhurried. Their combination of soul and singer-songwriter introspection is underpinned with a sparse, low key, at times swampy groove, driven by Knight’s expressive, down home voice. He also played all the instruments, ensuring the resulting sound was what he heard in his head, not dependent on other musicians’ interpretations. Although Knight is primarily a guitarist, it’s the sound of keyboards, specifically the Fender Rhodes electric piano, which dominates his music. Over the course of the album he conjures hypnotic jazz-inflected ballads, sweet piano riffs, and mysterious yet hummable melodies. Ultimately, Knight’s new EP is an exploratory step into a sonic realm of nuanced indie folk, blue-eyed-soul, and unconventional jazz. The combination of soul and singer-songwriter introspection is underpinned by a sparse, at times swampy groove and Knight’s expressive, down-home vocals.
Today Glide is premiering “Work Things Out,” a reflective, measured and inherently poignant track. The song oozes a jazzy, funky sound with an infectious piano and unmistakably groovy drumbeat. As it often does, Knight’s soulful voice wavers between restraint and vulnerability, never losing its sense of confidence. The song seems to embrace a sort of contemporary soul vibe for the Soundcloud generation with an indie rock guitar slicing through the groove to create a rich sonic texture.